Real-time Advertising Landscape: Case Study

This was a sponsored post by DigitasLBI under the Master Report series. 

One of our main clients in Singapore is a leader in the media and entertainment category, who we have worked with since 2014. What started out as a social media pilot on a single platform to launch a new cinematic franchise across Southeast Asia, has evolved into an integrated live newsroom, supporting all releases for six brands using four digital platforms.

After an amazing 2016, the company beat first quarter expectations, with a robust 2017 in prospect. In the past six months, we attracted the attention of fans 172 million times over the region, with an estimated unique reach of 167 million, contributing to a 10% cross-platform engagement rate. Paid media efficiencies have been realised year-on-year through continued targeting refinement.

Singaporeans are a tough audience to engage with, typically having a higher proportion of passives than other markets, but even here we achieved an estimated 4.3 million unique reach, with a combined engagement rate of over 8% and nearing 90,000 comments and shares on Facebook. Engagement rates in SEA are skewed to ultra-responsive markets such as the Philippines and Indonesia.

Let’s try to capture the key components that allowed us to achieve these metrics. Complementing amazing brand and video content from a global powerhouse brand is no small task. As much as 50% of the top performing content posts across Southeast Asia were produced locally for individual markets. While we were running a regional engagement, local consumers were at the heart of the strategy and effort has been expended evolving an operating model that allowed us to react to sentiment, tastes and nuances of each market in real-time.

First of all, we built up a dedicated team comprising brand champions, who are supported by local market, analytics and paid media experts. Brand champions are tasked to know everything there is to know about each brand and each franchise, regularly liaising with fans to understand their motivations and tastes or even negative issues, and then devise and release a story for that region. The transition to an integrated social and analytics management tool has helped us keep pace with release schedules, sometimes managing multiple releases in parallel.

We work in partnership with the media agency to define a campaign idea and communications strategy for each release. The media plan looks to drive maximum awareness and then a response in the run-up and launch of each movie. During a recent release we ensured that a prominent campaign hashtag call-to-action was included on all OOH media around Singapore. This allowed the team to be much more reactive to trending behaviours and deploy paid social tactics to hype up campaign content, promote ticket sales and to boost reach when we can see audiences are engaging.

In the ongoing quest to build advertising revenue, it’s tempting to ignore the importance of organic reach and engagement in the process.

By thinking local first, this gives the team a much clearer idea of which content is performing best and which can then be boosted. Some of the most engaging and shared content is generated by providing a live thematic coverage of brand events and experiential activities. During one talent tour in Singapore we grabbed the attention of fans 288 million times over the region, they left over 3,000 comments, and had a more than 7.3 engagement.

Pooled content creation is essential to building a real-time platform. This has meant working with a variety of content producers both in-house at the client and external partners. Approaching this as more of a content studio, with a key focus on co-location at key planning and campaign milestones, has further accelerated the process and allowed us to test new platforms such as Snapchat and Zalo.

Finally, we think of super fans and influencers as representing the voice of the customer; our brand champions engaging with the most active and passionate moviegoers from a standpoint of shared passion, whether it be the movie itself, the cinematic universe, comics or cosplay, has helped us to retain our audience’s attention by being more contextually relevant across multiple touch-points.